In the news: Zonta Club of Milwaukee marches in silence to bring awareness to domestic violence

The marchers walked silently for a mile through the blocks of downtown Milwaukee.

They held flags, each one carrying the story of someone whose life ended because of domestic violence.

They passed out cards to onlookers, explaining their mission of memorializing victims and their commitment to ending domestic abuse.

The Zonta Club of Milwaukee’s sixth annual walk, “Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women,” came at the start of Domestic Violence Awareness Month and less than two weeks after a report found Wisconsin experienced a record number of domestic violence-related homicides in 2020.

Fifty-eight people were killed in acts of domestic violence last year, according to the annual report from End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin.

In addition, eight perpetrators died by suicide and two others were killed by responding law enforcement, for a total of 68 people dying in domestic violence incidents, the report found. 

That’s about one death every five days.

Behind every number are a host of loved ones left to grieve — people like Carrie Scott-Haney. Her daughter, Audrey “TuTu” Scott, went missing in 2017 from a downtown bar and was murdered by her ex-boyfriend.

Scott-Haney came to Monday’s walk to push for change. She has started a petition to create a “Purple Alert” system for adult women who go missing and have previously been victims of domestic violence.

“There’s so many people that go missing and when their remains are found it’s never determined if it’s domestic abuse, but their families know” that it was, she said.

Scott-Haney was among the speakers at City Hall, where the nearly 50 marchers gathered after the walk sponsored by Zonta, a women’s service organization seeking to end gender-based violence and empower women.

Karin Tyler with the city’s Office of Violence Prevention shared some of her personal experiences with domestic abuse.

“I am a survivor,” she said, her voice echoing in the City Hall rotunda. 

She had been strangled and threatened with a gun, and she focused on keeping her children safe, she said.

“It infuriates me when I hear people say ‘Why did she stay?'” she said, describing how abusers can return again and again, and how women run into barriers when trying to leave.

And men have to be part of the effort to end domestic abuse, said Shawn Muhammad, director of The Asha Project, which serves African American women in Milwaukee.

“In order for us to eradicate intimate partner violence it will take all of us, and if the sisters could do it on their own, it would be eradicated already,” he said.

Deaths from domestic violence are the tip of the iceberg, said Carmen Pitre, executive director of Sojourner Family Peace Center.

“What it sits on is thousands of other situations right here in Milwaukee, where people are living in terror, who are suffering and who are living in isolation,” she said.

She called on those gathered to reflect on the stories they had carried. She shared how, at one point in the walk, a gust of wind tore her flag from her hands and sent it tumbling down the block. 

She chased after it, thinking of the 60-year-old woman honored on it, a woman only a year older than her.

“She was lost once, she doesn’t need to be lost again,” Pitre said.

In the news: Zonta Club of Jefferson City advocates to end violence against women

“The Zonta Club of Jefferson City takes pride in helping Zonta International promote the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence through the ‘Zonta Says No’ campaign,” said Sarah Veile, president of the Zonta Club of Jefferson City. “It is just one of many ways we are helping to spread Zonta’s message in an attempt to make our local community a place where every woman can achieve her full potential.”

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the local Zonta Club’s main advocacy will come through its Facebook page this year.

Each day, the group will post a picture of a new community leader involved in related groups — Central Missouri Stop Human Trafficking Coalition, the Rape and Abuse Crisis Service, HALO and the Pregnancy Help Center, to name a few — with information about their services or statistics on gender-based violence. They will also feature local government officials who have used their time in office to fight for the rights of women and families.

Joan Imhoff, secretary for the Zonta Club of Jefferson City, said the focus is to connect people experiencing abuse or a difficult situation with resources and make them aware of the people fighting for them. She said this year is especially important as everything is on the rise — suicide, depression, abuse and child abuse.

“When people pay attention to the campaign more because of issues occurring it’s just good at this time to get it out there for people to see,” Imhoff said. “If they need help, they’re not alone, and they shouldn’t be embarrassed to make contact with someone who can help.”

In the news: Zonta Club of New Providence hosts ceremony to remember mother and daughter homicide victims

A precious eight-year-old little girl is on a memorial billboard at the entrance of Nassau Village. She shouldn’t be there. She should be counting down the days to her birthday on December 12. She should be trying to adjust to the new normal of online schooling and thinking about what she wants for Christmas. But on September 28 this year, Ednique Wallace became the victim of murder. She and her mother Alicia Sawyer lost their lives together in a senseless act of violence that occurs too often in our society.

The Bahamas ranks tenth in the world for intentional homicides. Alicia and Ednique were killed in their home in Nassau Village, an area which has been declared an epicentre of domestic violence in The Bahamas during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Days ago, Zonta Bahamas began their version of UNECSO’s “Orange the World” campaign to end violence against women and girls by hosting a ceremony at the Nassau Village entrance. There, Patricia Minnis – the wife of Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis – tied the first orange bow and said to Bahamians: “We are better than this!”

The Zonta Club of New Providence, Families Of All Murder Victims (FOAM), the Department of Gender and Family Affairs, the Nassau Village Community and other NGOs joined together to erect a memorial banner for Ednique and her mom and also murder victims Gloria Rolle, Kenrica Martin and Cleo Lockhart. Below that banner is the community’s entrance sign, with the motto “The Place of Love, Peace and Unity”. Member of Parliament Halson Moultrie made a heartfelt appeal to residents to make this their reality.

Instead, we have a society which has yet to solve its violence issues and live as if it’s truly paradise. This sunny, peaceful clime has been marred by horror stories that make no sense on such a small island. “We are not barbarians,”, said Ann Marie Davis, wife of PLP leader Philip ‘Brave’ Davis’, as she joined Zonta in the campaign launch.

Women and girls like Alicia and Ednique deserve the protection of society. Zonta says there’s a way every single person can make a difference – by “saying no to violence in all its forms.” Everyone has to make it a point not to tolerate violence in order to reverse an ugly trend that leaves countless families in this country hurting for the loss of their loved ones.

Edward Wallace knows that hurt. His “little princess” was so special that “everyone who came into contact with her was amazed at how full of life and kind she was”. She was a very protective sister to her younger siblings Edward Wallace Jr and Krishan Wallace and even extended that nurturing spirit to her older sister, Kenlisa Monfils.

“She really enjoyed traveling,” Edward said about his daughter.

“Every summer we would go to Miami and spend time with her uncle and aunt. I remember two years ago, we went shopping in Walmart and she got lost. I searched the whole store looking for her until we got a call saying she was at the front entrance. Just last year we went on a cruise to Key West, Orlando and Mexico. While on the cruise, she loved hanging out by the pool and eating tons of ice cream.”

Edward’s family and friends, as well co-workers at BAIC, are offering support and love, but it is crucial that people come together to avoid tragedies like what this family has to overcome.

“Ednique was a curious and ambitious girl.” Edward said.

“She always loved learning new things and seeking new challenges. She got that from her mother. Lisa Sawyer was a very determined and hard worker who also loved learning new things and seeking new challenges. She was a kindred spirit. She was undoubtedly, a great mother to her three children and did her absolute best never to steer them wrong. She was an Andros-based woman who loved to cook. I met Lisa in 2008 while I was on patrol as a security guard and she was working at Hibiscus Inn. Our relationship was always an honest, respectful one and I thank the Lord for the time we spent in each other’s lives.”

Alicia is the daughter of Tiffany Reckley and Norman Knowles. She attended Lowe Sound Primary, then North Andros High School. She is described as deeply family-oriented and well known for her kindness and compassion. A hard worker, Alicia worked for Dunkin’ Donuts where she worked herself up to a management position. Social media reports say Alicia made previous complaints to the police about the suspect of her murder.

[25 November was] the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. It also marks the beginning of “16 Days of Activism to Say No to Violence Against Women and Girls”, which culminates on December 10, International Human Rights Day. Each year, Zonta uses this time to paint the town orange. This year, say no to violence garbage bins have been placed throughout several communities. Zonta’s “40 Orange Bows”, and the bright orange banner at Nassau Village’s entrance is a poignant reminder of how very important this campaign is.

Zonta members decided that Nassau Village would be the focus this year, even before it became the epicentre of domestic violence for The Bahamas. President of the Zonta Club of New Providence Theresa Adderley-Smith said for the past seven years, their focus has been bringing a heightened awareness of the scourge. However, they have moved towards advocacy, working with government and non-government organizations to make policy changes so the laws are in place to protect and advance women and girls.

Mrs Minnis pointed out that men are just as important and “this is not a feminist movement where women are trying to get ahead of men; we want to be equal partners with love and respect”. Zonta’s national advocacy campaign chair Marisa Mason-Smith invited representatives of partnering NGOs to speak, including Charlene Paul of the Caribbean Institute of Women in Leadership (CIWiL) and Coralee Adderley of the the National Women’s Advisory Council.

Zonta Club of New Providence, a member of Zonta International, is committed to empowering women through service and advocacy. Zonta will host a series of events during the campaign.

District 31 Zontians join in Taiwan to advocate against gender-based violence

Zontians from District 31 gathered in Changhua County, Taiwan to participate in the child care and new emigration activities on 29 November.

In addition to caring for people with physical and mental disabilities, members from District 31 organized with Changhua New Residents Development Association to hold the Asian Food Cooking Competition, encouraging the new emigrate residents in Taiwan to improve their economic abilities, self confidence and respect multiculturalism.

For the event, which took place during the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, Zontians dressed in orange shirts and shouted, “Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women” as they marched.

Through service and advocacy, from awareness to action, the team showed orange power to arouse the attention for standing against gender-based violence and work together to maintain the harmony and progress in Taiwan.

In the news: Zonta Club of Bradford advocates to end violence against women

“The Zonta Club of Bradford collected items Tuesday for different service projects. Pictured are wrapped gifts for The ELF Fund’s Christmas gift program, along with collected food for a project where Zontians will donate to the Friendship Table and local food pantries this holiday season. On Wednesday, the Club will begin its 16 Days of Activism campaign, too.

The Zonta Club of Bradford invites the community along as it advocates for women’s rights during its 16 Days of Activism campaign.

The campaign begins Wednesday — Domestic Violence Awareness Day — and ends on Human Rights Day on Dec. 10.

Local Zontian Lisa Chapman talked about the importance of the annual campaign, which launched in 2012. “Violence against women is the most pervasive human rights violation. It knows no national or cultural barriers; happens at home, school, in both public and private places,” Chapman shared. “It may consist of psychological, sexual, or physical abuse often manifested by rape, trafficking, assault, child marriage and in some countries, genital mutilation.”

She said that the Bradford Chapter will run an informative Facebook campaign for those 16 days.

“Each day we will post an interesting anecdote, video, or quote from a local person, Zonta member, or fact resource,” Chapman explained. “For instance, on opening day we announce our campaign and invite all in the community to shine an orange porch light to symbolize support for ending violence against women. Subsequent posts will speak to this goal or any of our mission’s goals from people who work closely with this problem.

“Of particular interest is the impact the pandemic has produced,” she added.

Chapman explained that officers from local departments will talk about the recent increase in domestic violence during the pandemic. Also set to share is St. Marys City Councilwoman Margie Brown, who will talk about the importance of having female representatives in government.

The community can show their support by sharing the Zonta Club of Bradford’s daily posts so they can reach as many people as possible. Search for the “Zonta Club of Bradford, Pennsylvania” Facebook page to find the group’s posts.”

From: The Bradford Era (

Bombay clubs advocate for ending child marriage alongside local students

The Zonta Says NO Campaign for the Zonta clubs of Bombay I and Bombay III, District 25, commenced on 4 December with members of both the clubs saying no to violence against women and child marriage.

The students of Lady Engineer School, both girls and boys in ninth and tenth grade classes participated in the program.  Club members showed a video of Kirti Bharti of Saarthi Trust, who is a warrior against child marriage and interviews of girls rescued from child marriage and now leading a better life. These depicted the ill effects of child marriage and created social awareness.  

Next, slides were projected with various captions saying no to violence and child marriage and advocating for the protection and safety of women.

The students were asked to share their views and it was nice to see the boys equally and enthusiastically participating along with the girls.  

Two dances were performed by the students. One depicted violence against women, particularly rape and how to fight it and the second focused on women’s empowerment.

A pledge was taken by the students, teachers and Zonta members to stop violence and child marriage whenever and wherever witnessed or heard. The session ended with the dance participants receiving certificates of appreciation.

District 15 members advocate ending child marriage at Michigan State Capitol

D15 Advocacy Day 1

On 4 December, members from Zonta International District 15 gathered at the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing for its first-ever advocacy day.

Zonta members met with representatives and staffers who did not know that minors can get married in Michigan. Rep. Kara Hope, a cosponsor of one of the bills to end child marriage, and Rep. Daire Rendon, who sits on the judiciary committee, came to the district’s legislative briefing.

District 15 Governor-Elect Deanna Cambridge joined Rep. Sarah Anthony at a press conference and Anthony welcomed Zontians to the House gallery during the legislative session.

Click here to see more photos.

Zonta Club of Pampanga involves students and local organizations in Zonta Says NO activities

The Zonta Club of Pampanga in the Philippines, District 17—in partnership with Angeles City and SM City Clark—convened to for their Zonta Says NO to Violence against women and children activity.

The women’s desk from the local government units, private companies’ corporate social responsibility department heads, different foundations, non-governmental organizations and students were gathered and raised the flags to join Zonta in their quest to eliminate violence.

The club also recognized three Centennial Champion Awardees and three Centennial Community Awardees for their exemplary contribution to 2019  projects of Zonta.

The highlight of the event is the dance interpretation of “Break the Silence, No to Violence” performed by four groups from different schools in Pampanga. The performances had intense messages on the issue of violence against women.  Also included in the show is the Aeta children’s dance interpretation on the issue of child marriage that is commonly practiced in their community. 

Zonta e-Club of West Africa calls on men to stand against gender-based violence for a new advocacy project


The Zonta e-Club of West Africa, District 18, unveiled a new advocacy project during the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence.

The project, “Orange the World: Men Against Rape” calls on men to take a stand against attitudes that normalize rape culture, child marriage and all forms of violence against women and girls.

Throughout the 16 Days, the club is posting graphics featuring photos and quotes from men supporting their initiative on their Instagram and Facebook accounts.

The Zonta e-Club of West Africa is asking men to fill out a form to show their support.

The form, in part, reads: “There is overwhelming evidence that the majority of sexual assaults are perpetrated by men against women. However, not all men are perpetrators! In fact, some men are victims and the majority of men have never raped or sexually assaulted anyone. For decades, men have been left out of actions geared toward the elimination of rape and other forms of violence against women but, at Zonta e-Club of West Africa, we are looking to change this by giving men an opportunity to speak up as advocates for women’s rights. To this end, we invite you to add your voice to our 16 Days of Activism Campaign. Show the world that you stand against gender-based violence!”

The club is partnering with Thrive Care and MDM Entertainment for the project.

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In the news: Zonta Club of New Providence leads the charge to end violence against women in The Bahamas

For the past seven years, Zonta Bahamas has been at the forefront of activism to end violence against women and girls. Zontians have been out there in the community, on public and corporate platforms, bringing awareness and encouraging Bahamians to change the face of violence in this country.

This year, they were at it again, launching the 16 days with a big event in Rawson Square held in conjunction with the Department of Gender and Family Affairs, the Ministry of Health and NGOs. The launch was held on 25 November, the International Day to End Violence Against Women and Girls. The 16 days officially ends on 10 December, which is the United Nations’ appointed International Human Rights Day.

The club’s theme for this year is “From Activism to Advocacy.” One of Zonta’s partners for the 16 days this year, the National Congress of Trade Unions’ Women’s Association, is pushing for the Bahamas government to ratify C-190 – the International Labour Organisation’s Convention to end violence and harassment in the workplace.

It takes a lot of work to pull off the many events Zonta holds – and it’s all volunteer work. Kayla calls it a passion of hers and despite her busy professional life, she will continue to work hard for causes for the betterment of women and girls.

Continue reading.